HOME OF THE LADY DENMAN - Local history isn't always about the big story - the everyday story of life in the early development of the region can be a fascinating, entertaining and educational journey.

5 May 2015

100 YEARS AGO – Jervis Bay

I found this article titled “HINDS HUSKISSON HAUL” in the Shoalhaven Telegraph dated Wednesday 28TH 1915, while I was researching information about the early days of fishing in and around Jervis Bay.   It turned out to be something completely different.
It appears the local police 100 years ago were kept very busy as well.



At the Police Court, yesterday before the P.M Constable Hinds, of Huskisson,  presented a batch of offenders.

    Peter Kinimont pleaded guilty to two charges of over-loading and was fined 10s and 6s costs,  for each indiscretion,  14 days allowed to pay.

    W. A McKenzie,  for exceeding his liquid-carrying capacity, was fined 5s and 6s costs.
     Jim Casey,  against whom a prohibition order is in operation,  pleaded guilty to being found on licensed premises.  - The Jervis Bay Hotel, The constable said that Casey went into the bar and called for drinks,  but the licensee refused to serve him, Fined 20s and 14s costs.

     Jimmy May pleaded guilty to using language that the P.M. characterised as vile,  and was fined 40s and 6s costs.   On a further charge of carrying excess cargo,  Jimmy was fined 10s and 6s costs.  He was allowed 14 days to induce the ghost to walk.

     Robert Turnbull,  who carried a fair load to the court,  was fined 10s and 6s costs for being “moiled” and 60s and 6s costs for using insulting language to Constable Hinds.
     “Can you pay that ?” asked senior constable Donnellan.  “Sixty bob ? – Oh No.” said Robert,  and he went to the seaside at Wollongong for a month.

      John Manning who failed to appear,  was fined 5s and 6s costs for being unable to disguise his insobriety.


Interesting set of fines for an interesting set of offences.
Meaning: Moiled - move around in confusion or agitation.


Following on from the previous story about insobriety and alcohol affected locals, I came upon another story.  This one had the Jervis Bay Licensee, W. J. B. Cambourne,  prosecuted for serving drinks to 5 sailors from the HMAS Franklin of the College at Captains Point on a Sunday.

Franklin copy1916: Tender HMAS FRANKLIN at the RAN College, Jervis By Malcolm Perkins
you can see this mage and more on the Horatio J. Kookaburra flickr page.

Constable Hinds’ was a busy man.

In 1915 it was illegal to sell alcohol on a Sunday,  unless the person was a lodger or bone-fide traveller,  to be a bona-fide traveller one had to live 10 miles or more from the establishment serving alcohol..

To make it more interesting,  the party concerned had travelled by sailing boat from the college and not by road.


The prosecution, after expert opinion was tendered by Lieutenant Morton Henry Moyes from Captain’s Point,  an expert in measuring distance,  told the court,  “the college by water was less than ten miles,  and less than 10 by road, even if you had to use alternative routes when the road was in a bad way after rain, it was still 10 chains short of 10 miles”.

In the Licensee’s defence they argued the licensee had asked the men if they were bona-fide travellers?  and the men had answered yes!.   
    The licensee presumed the men had travelled by road and was unaware they had come by boat, they were in their uniforms, so he knew they were from the college.
    The defence argued there had never been any warning given to the licensee before,  and the hotel under other licensee’s had served many men from the college for many years  beforewithout any problems.
    It also stated it was a general belief,  the college was 10 miles from the hotel in question, and 10 chains was only a small shortfall, and could be accounted for, depending on which track you had to use.
    The defence also argued that travel via the bay,  should not be considered a public thoroughfare.

After much argument.

The final Judgment.
The P.M. Mr Clegg, thought it quite possible the defendant thought it reasonable to serve the men from the college on a Sunday because it had been a custom to serve liquor to men from the college in the past.
        P.M. :  “That was not a reasonable conclusion,  the licensee should have made better enquiries to elicit the facts and made reasonable enquiry to the distance travelled”.
       He also stated, “A man was not a bona-fide traveller if he visited a hotel solely for the purpose of obtaining a drink, and in this case the party in question appeared to have had no other object in going to the hotel but to obtain a drink”.

The P.M. said he had weighed the evidence without any bias,  but he was glad he had been able to come to a decision,  as it was a bad thing to have the temptation of a hotel where the men and boys at the college could get a drink on Sundays.

”How times have changed”

A fine of 3 pounds was imposed.

The P.M, allowed 30s each for the witnesses.
8s for Constable Hinds.
8s costs to Court.
2 pounds 2s professional costs.


Meaning - A chain is a unit of length. It measures 66 feet, and 80 chains in one statute mile.

The above story has a sad story attached to it,  it involves the 5 sailors, loss of life and heroism. I will post that another time.


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